With the Coronavirus sweeping across almost all borders, fear and anxiety has gripped hearts around the world. No one seems safe anymore and everyone is searching for methods of protection. In times of crisis however, the children of God, as it has happened right through history, can find encouragement and comfort through the promises of God. One such passage people often turn to for comfort is Psalm 91.
As I look at social media today, I find many people sharing either the entire passage of Psalm 91 or at least parts of it, to strengthen others. Through this article, I would like to share my thoughts as well regarding this beautiful Psalm. Do keep your Bible open to Psalm 91 as you read.
As we approach Easter, I would like to base this sermon outline on 1 Corinthians 15, which is one of the most important chapters in the Bible. From this chapter, I will be sharing 4 vital truths penned by the Apostle Paul on the resurrection. They are:
1) The Resurrection is an established fact
From verses 5-8, Paul lists those who actually saw the Lord Jesus after the Resurrection. In fact, this passage reveals at least 5 appearances of Christ after the Resurrection, besides His appearance to Paul himself. These had to be vibrant, real-life encounters as those who saw the risen Christ were willing to lay down their lives joyfully for Him (Refer verse 30-33) . The amazing thing is that they were willing to do so even though no noticeable, tangible benefits would seemingly accrue to them!!
Introduction: It is said that Billy Graham once attributed the large number of responses to his sermons on one central theme. It was, that he always drew attention in his sermons to the Lord Jesus Christ and to ‘the power of the cross’.
As we draw close to Good Friday, it’s good to remind ourselves of the power of the cross and what the Lord accomplished through His mighty sacrifice. Although the cross was a symbol of execution at that time (much like an electric chair today), God’s saving power in full was revealed at the cross. It symbolized the greatest rescue mission the world has ever seen!!
From Colossians 2:13-15, I would like to leave 3 thoughts about ‘The Power of the Cross’ in this sermon outline. They are:
A man was constantly worrying that somebody was under his bed. He went to a Counselor who was willing to help him, but at a high fee, over many months. A few weeks later the Counselor met the man on the street and asked him why he had not returned. The man replied, “I met a friend who gave me some great advice for free. It worked perfectly’. The Counselor asked what advice had been given him and the man replied, ‘He asked me to cut the legs of the bed down to ground level”!
How much we worry and how many of our worries are unfounded? Unhealthy worrying can cripple us to the point of making us ineffective and unable to cope with life’s challenges. It can also lead to depression. We worry over sickness, viruses, finances, family, children, salt, sugar, unforeseen dangers and many other things.
Arugam Bay, Sri Lanka – Photo Credit: Vasantha Jayasooriya
Let me begin this sermon on God’s restoration with the following illustration.
One of the historical wonders of Sri Lanka is the complex rock fortress, Sigiriya, and the palace built on it by one of our former Kings, Kasyapa, many centuries ago. It is an amazing place to see & tourists flock there to view its beauty, grandeur and craftsmanship. One of the highlights of Sigiriya is the frescoes that are painted on the rock walls. These and the site itself are considered National treasures, with UNESCO listing Sigiriya as a world heritage site. (If ever you come over to Sri Lanka, you need to visit Sigiriya).
Many years ago, some of the frescoes were vandalized by an unknown group of people, with, (if I remember correctly), either ink or paint being thrown, to deface them. As a result, many experts had to be brought in (foreign and local), to work at restoring these frescoes back to their original state. Thankfully, they succeeded in most of their painstaking efforts.
There is a story of a child who was slow in learning and did poorly in her first grade in school. However, when she started grade 2, her grades started to improve dramatically. The reason: her new teacher, on the first day of school, would call every student close to her and whisper something nice into their ear. When this particular child came up to the teacher, she apparently whispered into the child’s ear, “I wish I had a child like you”. That beautiful thought had a huge impact on the child & it reflected in her studies from there on!
(We have amalgamated 3 of our devotionals to bring you a 3-point sermon on one page about how God cares for His children.)
Introduction:In an interview with The Reader’s Digest magazine, Grammy Award winning pop singer Gloria Estefan spoke graciously about her year one teacher, Dorothy Collins, who helped shape her early English language skills. Gloria has in fact spoken many times of that period in her life and the challenges she faced (including severe teasing), as a foreign student, particularly due to her inability to communicate in English. However, Gloria received assistance in her language skills and was given the confidence to persevere by her teacher, Dorothy Collins.
Eventually, Gloria won the class reading prize and went on to study languages at University. She also built a highly successful international career in pop music. Said Gloria, “My year one teacher didn’t just teach me the language; she helped me find my voice.“
Finding God’s Favor – Introduction: Most people, especially those with a heart for adventure, like wide, open spaces. On our travels too, we prefer to move away from crowded cities looking for open spaces. We look for beaches, mountains, open roads, rivers etc to enjoy open spaces and the beauty of nature
In sporting events like rugby, soccer, cricket and basketball, when a team gives the opposing team additional room or extra space to make a move, it can lead to giving them an opportunity to score and maybe even win the game. I am reminded of Carlos Alberto’s legendary goal for Brazil in the final of the 1970 soccer World Cup. Yes, finding extra room can even be a deciding factor between victory and defeat.
The above video is taken off a sermon titled ‘Jesus- The Prince of Peace’ presented on December 27th, 2020, at the People’s Church in Colombo, Sri Lanka. A brief outline of the sermon is given below. Included in the sermon is a powerful life-changing story by Vanessa Perera at 16.11″ at and a beautiful Solo (‘O Holy Night’) by Melanie Bibile at 24.05″. Thanks to Mokshini Jayamanne for the sign language translation.
The Prince of Peace ( Isaiah 9:6-7)
Illustration to introduce topic
Reflect on the desperation in Isaiah’s time and the similarities in today’s situation
In Isaiah 9:1-2, the darkness and gloom is removed and the light comes shining through
Read Isaiah 9:6-7 and pray
Only Jesus can bring true peace to individuals and society.
(This is an edited transcript of a sermon preached at The People’s Church in Colombo, Sri Lanka, in 2017)
Good morning Friends, my message today is taken from 1 Chronicles Chapter 21 and it’s titled ‘David’s Intercession During a National Crisis’.
I am going to speak about a major crisis that came upon Israel that is reflected in the Old Testament. But before I go further, let’s read 1 Chronicles 21:26. It says, “David built an altar to the Lord there and sacrificed burnt offerings and fellowship offerings. He called on the Lord, and the Lord answered him with fire from heaven on the altar of burnt offering.”
.David’s sacrifice mentioned here was a sacrifice of intercession. It was a sacrifice of intercession in the midst of a crisis. So today, as we look at whatever crisis situations we may be going through in our own lives, may be there is something that God is leading us to by way of bringing a sacrifice of intercession towards Him.
I want to leave with you 5 points from this chapter about David’s intercessory sacrifice at this critical moment, and I pray that one, or two, or more of these points, will speak to your heart this morning. Whenever God’s Word is proclaimed, irrespective of who presents it, God speaks, and I believe that God will speak to all of you in some clear form or the other as I share from this passage.
I remember an occasion when I was battling what seemed like a huge crisis in my life. It was causing me much anxiety and sleepless nights. In the midst of this battle, a gentleman who was a very shy and quiet person, spoke out a prophetic word at one of our Sunday evening services. The message he shared that evening under the Holy Spirit’s anointing was exactly what I needed to hear for the situation I was in. As I received assurance as God spoke through this brother’s words, He began to work in my crisis and everything changed within a couple of weeks!!
If ever we needed to hear from God, it is now. The good news is that God still speaks to His people in different ways and this is very evident in the Christmas story.
Proposition : God waits to speak to you at Christmas time.
In this sermon I would like to share 3 ways in which God spoke in the Christmas story and its relevance for us today. They are:
Introduction: As we go through the music of today and days gone by, we find that the ‘Heart’ is referred to over and over again. To take a few examples of songs that came out during different stages of my life, we find titles like ‘Heart of Gold’, ‘A Good Heart’, ‘My Heart Will go on Loving You’, and ‘Your Cheating Heart’. (I guess these titles show how old I am!). That’s because the heart is at the center of all life.
One of the meanings given by the Cambridge Dictionary for the word ‘Heart’ goes like this: “The central or most important part” (of a matter). That’s how we come to the term “Let’s get to the heart of the matter”. Another description of the term “the heart of the matter” by The Free Dictionary goes like this: “The most important, basic or fundamental essence or elements of an issue….or matter at hand. That brings me to the main thought in this sermon.
Proposition: Let’s ensure we get to ‘The Heart of Christmas’ this year.
One of the most well loved statements in the Bible is when God proclaims, “I will never leave you, nor forsake you. This promise of God’s care has encouraged thousands of His children throughout history. In fact, most of us may know it by memory.
This short video (Approx 5 minutes) Covers 4 passages in the Bible where God’s care through this promise , (or something close to it), comes through emphatically. it is a promise revealed to Moses and Joshua. It is also emphasized in the Book of Hebrews and in a slightly different format through the words of Jesus. References are from the Books of Deuteronomy, Joshua, Hebrews, and the Gospel of Matthew.
May this video of God’s care be a blessing and encouragement to you. If you would like to read the full sermon on this topic, please click on the link given below.